Silver Birch Award Nominees

It is the most wonderful time of the year…. the Forest of Reading program has announced its nominations! Every year I count the days until the nominations are released.  I get so excited that I’m bouncing up and down like a child waiting for Santa Claus to come.

The Forest of Reading program is the largest recreational reading program in Canada. It is designed to showcase Canadian authors and illustrators and get children excited about books.  There are categories for different age groups, each with ten different nominations. They are a great resource for parents looking to encourage their child to read. The categories cover all sorts of genres from humour to historical fiction. There is always a title that will grab the interest of even the most reluctant readers.

Forever Birchwood by Danielle Daniel

The Silver Birch Award nominees feature titles geared for Grades 5 and 6. My personal favourite from this year’s category is Forever Birchwood by Danielle Daniel.

There is only one yellow birch left in Sudbury. Wolf’s grandmother calls it the ‘queen.’  The forest used to be full of yellow birches, but they died out after years of sulphur exposure. The bark on a yellow birch has a coppery, almost golden hue. It stands out from the common silver birches in the forest. A yellow birch grows slowly, making it even more difficult to replace once they’ve been lost.

Wolf’s great-grandfather could speak to trees. He would put his hands on a tree and listen. His efforts helped protect the forest. He could tell when trees were sick and needed attention. Wolf has her own special connection with trees. She spends her days in the woods, exploring nature. She even has her own cabin she built with her friends. Patch-worked together with scrap building materials, it has become their own sacred space. They call it ‘Birchwood.’

One day, Wolf and her friends discover orange bands wrapped around a section of the forest. The trees are set to be clearcut to make room for a new subdivision. Devastated, Wolf and her friends come together to save their beloved Birchwood.

The other Silver Birch Award nominees include:

Silver Birch Nominee book covers

Stay tuned for more Forest of Reading nominees coming soon!